The search for missing Cache Creek fire chief Clayton Cassidy has been suspended as of the evening of Sunday, May 14. The file will remain open with Ashcroft RCMP, and the ticket will remain open with Kamloops Search and Rescue.
“It has been suspended, and will reconvene when conditions improve and safety conditions improve,” says Ashcroft RCMP Sgt. Kathleen Thain. “We are watching the levels daily.”
Cassidy went missing sometime after 3:3.0 a.m. on Friday, May 5, when he was checking water levels around the village following flooding the night before. The fire department crew cab, still idling, was found beside Cache Creek near the Brookside Campground, but there was no sign of Cassidy.
Sgt. Dan Moskaluk, media relations for south district RCMP, confirmed the news on Sunday evening. “The Ashcroft RCMP and other agency representatives of the unified command team coordinating the search efforts for Clayton Cassidy have made a determination to suspend current search efforts on Sunday May 14,” he said.
“Dozens of search and rescue technicians from various SAR teams, Cache Creek, Ashcroft Volunteer Fire Department, and Kamloops Fire Rescue members, alongside countless community volunteers, have been actively searching the creek’s edge lines and downstream areas for any sign of Clayton Cassidy since the day of his disappearance on May 5. To date no sign of Mr. Cassidy has been found since he was last seen monitoring flood conditions at the creek on May 5.
“Cache Creek remains high and fast moving, and daily monitoring of the water conditions will continue to be made in order to re-assess when further searches can be conducted. Once water levels recede in the area, searchers may have better chances at locating Clayton Cassidy and making a recovery.”
Moskaluk notes that Cassidy was wearing his Cache Creek Fire Department blue coveralls with a yellow flashlight attached, and yellow and black firefighter boots. He was last known to be wearing Levi blue jeans and a black Cache Creek
Graffiti Days logo T-shirt under the blue coveralls. He was equipped with a Motorola HT1250 fire department radio with belt clip, and a Samsung black Galaxy 6 cellphone.
Searchers have completed exhaustive efforts to the best of their ability given the current water conditions, and we have made a determination to suspend the search in its current form,” says Thain. “Once the water recedes we will look at conducting further efforts. The Ashcroft RCMP is ever grateful for the assistance and support received from all. The community as a whole continues to support Clayton Cassidy’s family, as well as one another.
“The search is not over for Clayton,” says Ashcroft fire chief Josh White, who has been in charge of the volunteer command centre at the Cache Creek fire hall. “It will go on, and we will actively work on information brought to our attention; for example, if someone sees something blue caught up on something. This will go on until we find him. Kamloops Search and Rescue has said that when conditions improve, call them.”